What is collagen? Why is it such a hot name in the cosmetic industry? You’ll find the words “collagen supplement” just about everywhere nowadays, from your health store in tablet and powder form to your favourite juice place, where your go-to smoothie just got boosted with a scoop of the good stuff. Taking a collagen supplement is commonly suggested as a way to boost your skin health, but why? How does collagen reduce skin aging, prevent wrinkles, and more? How can such a small thing have such anti-aging properties?
Victorian Dermal Group has all the information on how taking collagen supplements may help to better your skin health and why it helps. We’re experts in human skin physiology and know all the secrets to youthful skin. If you’re interested in working with us to improve your skin, book a consult or view our treatment options.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is a protein that already exists in your body. It helps to make up the connective tissues of your body, such as your ligaments, muscles, tendons, and, of course, your skin. Collagen production or “collagen synthesis” occurs primarily in the cells of fibroblasts. Collagen comes in 28 different forms, but the most common type, Type I, is found in connective tissue. Types II through IV is found in joints, intervertebral discs, reticular fibres in your blood and skin, and as a component of your inner ear, eye lens, and kidneys.
Collagen Powder and Products
Recently, collagen products have gained popularity. Supplemental collagen can come in two forms. You can purchase oral collagen (hydrolyzed collagen that is broken down into smaller peptides and can be easier digested by the body) which is either taken in powder or capsule form, or you can opt for topical collagen, as a cream or an ointment.
Collagen in Food
Several different food products also contain high levels of collagen. These are typically foods that have abundant protein content, such as bone broth and pork skin. Collagen-containing foods have been proven to significantly improve gut health. Collagen supplements can also exist in the form of food that has a collagen supplement added to it. Foods already high in amino acids tend to have higher collagen content.
Many professionals suggest you eat foods rich in collagen, as a more affordable alternative to purchasing collagen supplements. Beef, fish, and chicken skin/pork skin, in addition to vitamin C-rich foods (as this vitamin is crucial for collagen synthesis), are great ways to increase collagen levels in your body. Your stomach acids will break down the collagen from the food you eat into individual collagen fibres and peptides to be more easily absorbed by your blood vessels and your body.
Drawbacks and Downsides
There are some downsides to collagen, especially in the form of ingestible collagen. Some people using collagen say that they have a perpetual feeling of fullness or bloating, and collagen can take up to 8 weeks to improve skin elasticity and show its effectiveness.
Hyaluronic acid and vitamin C supplements are good alternatives to collagen for skin conditions, for those who may not want to take it. Keratin is another option.
The Benefits of Collagen for Eye Wrinkles, Skin Elasticity, & Other Perks
Do collagen supplements reduce wrinkles? Does taking collagen prevent wrinkles and skin wrinkling? In a way, yes. For sensitive skin or skin that is starting to age and weaken, ingesting collagen peptides can improve hydration and skin elasticity. Taking collagen as you age is especially important, as many of us experience decreased collagen production over time.
Collagen fibres have also been proven to reduce wrinkles and dryness in your skin, thereby slowing the aging process and resulting in improved skin elasticity. For women, taking 3-10 grams of collagen derivatives per day for roughly 70 days greatly improved skin hydration.
Taking collagen supplements essentially works by promoting your body to produce collagen at an increased rate. Topical application and oral collagen supplements can also increase the production of amino acids and other proteins found in your body that benefit the structure of your skin, giving collagen its “anti-aging” properties.
Other health benefits include joint pain relief. Joint pain collagen can help to maintain the structure of your cartilage. Health professionals see beneficial effects in older individuals taking collagen to improve their symptoms of osteoarthritis.
Collage can also reduce bone loss. Your bones are made majorly from collagen. Collagen supplements help reduce low bone density. Low bone density can contribute to a higher risk of bone fractures. A control group for a 12-month study took a calcium supplement and no collagen, whereas a separate group took a calcium supplement and 5 grams of collagen. Those who took the calcium and collagen combination had significantly reduced their blood levels of a protein that encourages bone breakdown, whereas those who only took the calcium had increased proteins in their blood.
There’s evidence to suggest collagen oral supplementation may promote heart health. As those without enough collagen in their bodies age, the arteries in their body that are given structure from collagen begin to weaken and become less flexible. This can result in atherosclerosis, heart attack, and stroke. Taking collagen daily can result in a significant reduction of this risk.
There have been too few human studies on the following health benefits, but collagen hydrolysates may help to offer the following health benefits:
- Weight loss, as specific collagen peptides may aid in a faster metabolism.
- Brain health, as supplemental collagen may help to improve mood and significantly reduce anxiety symptoms.
- Hair and nail health, as taking collagen hydrolysate supplements can help increase the strength of your nail/hail structure.
- Gut health, as some professionals allege that taking collagen can reduce the symptoms of intestinal permeability.
Related Treatments for Wrinkles and Skin Concerns
Here at Victorian Dermal Group, our clinicians will work with you to gain an understanding of your skin concerns and medical history so that we may recommend the most appropriate solutions for you. All our treatments are safe and we’ll ensure that they are suitable for you.
Book a consult with us to discuss your skin concerns and medical history today.
We offer the following treatments for wrinkles and skin concerns:
- Skin needling - This treatment promotes extra collagen in your skin and heals damaged skin. Learn more HERE.
- Anti ageing - This treatment can reduce the visibility of wrinkles, pigmentation, and fine lines. Learn more HERE.
We use medical-grade technology and work with only accredited dermal clinicians to ensure your 100% satisfaction with our services. You’ll receive treatments that utilize technology backed by science, are fully customised to your skin, and provide you with an all-in-one treatment that requires you to sit down only once.